Passion for India … @sandwichlightindia …

Excellent to be invited to be part of another very worthwhile Instagram feed … even if this one does have the initially puzzling name of @sandwichlightindia.

Sandwichlightindia … created by Queensland photographer and ‘Indophile’ Russell Shakespeare  … is a collective platform  for “photographers who are passionate about India” … and the invited membership, including (but not only) very talented photographer colleagues Marco Del Grande, Warren Clarke, Brendan Esposito, Peter Wallis and S Anand Singh, certainly show a love for imagery on the subcontinent.

The catalyst for the name ‘sandwichlightindia’ was explained to me by Russell. Seems he and Varanasi photographer Anand Singh were together on an assignment during the Hindu ‘Festival of Lights’ … Diwali. The pic idea was to portray a certain candle lit location at twilight. When they got to the location at dusk the candles weren’t lit and the light was fading.

Russell heard Anand and other local photographers saying “Sandwich light no good, sandwich light no good” … one even repeating it to a pic editor on the other end of the phone. Seems that the term compared the light to a sandwich … one slice of bread is too dark, the other slice too light … and all the good stuff (balanced and just right light) is in the middle of the sandwich!

… and that’s how @sandwichlightindia was born.

The feed is still in it’s infancy … Russell admits that the name means it’s hard to just come across … but the work and depiction of Indian life makes it well worth a visit and a follow. If you have any interest in quality photojournalism and India I urge you to do so …

I’m also a member of two other high profile Instagram photographer collectives … @everydayclimatechange (addressing climate change issues around the World through imagery … currently 114,000 followers) and @everydayaustralia (depictions of daily life in Australia … 54,000 followers).

Below are a selection of images from @sandwichlightindia by my colleagues … from top © Russell Skakespeare, A Anand Singh, Marco Del Grande, Warren Clarke and Peter Wallis.


@sandwichlightindia - image by Russell Shakespeare - on blog post by Brian Cassey - "

@sandwichlightindia - image by S Anand Singh - on blog post by Brian Cassey - "Passion for India ... @sandwichlightindia ..."

@sandwichlightindia - image by Marco Del Grande- on blog post by Brian Cassey - "Passion for India ... @sandwichlightindia ..."

@sandwichlightindia - image by Warren Clarke - on blog post by Brian Cassey - "Passion for India ... @sandwichlightindia ..."

@sandwichlightindia - image by Peter Wallis - on blog post by Brian Cassey - "Passion for India ... @sandwichlightindia ..."

‘Spread’ in Australian Photography with ‘AFP400TX’ …

Excellent article in the current ‘Australian Photography’ magazine … and a luverly use of one of my images across a double page spread on the title pages … on Renato Repetto‘s wonderful ongoing ‘AFP400TX’ project.

The read entitled ‘Film Noir’, written by photography journalist Sam Edmonds, tells the story of Renato’s idea of passing a vintage 70’s Nikon F2 around to a host of Australia’s top photographers to each shoot one 36 frame roll of Tri-X black and white film. The resulting images will form the basis of eventual exhibitions and a book.

Singing the praises (rightly) of Renato’s idea, the article also delves into the reactions and the resulting project work of several legendary … and … uuummm … older ‘AFP400TX’ practioners … in Tim Page, Michael Coyne and Robert McFarlane. I also get a par or two and a couple of accompanying images in the article. (Sometimes it’s nice to be ‘the youngest’.)

Although the exhibitions and book may still be some little time in the future … the Nikon F2 is still traversing Australia in the hands of celebrated and not so celebrated photographer’s … it’s great to see Renato’s excellent project already gaining the respect it deserves. (My earlier comments on ‘AFP400TX’ can be found at  … … and …

My double page spread image (below) … shot on just the last frame 36 on my roll of Tri-X  …  is of musician Geoff Tozer who has been diagnosed with several forms of terminal cancer. My second image accompanying the article was a portrait of Aurukun ‘Camp Dog’ artist Lex Namponan.

Image © Brian Cassey & publication by Australian Photography

Australian Photography - Film Noir - AFP400TX project - Geoff Tozer image by Brian Cassey

Some B&W Success …

Can’t say that I’ve ever entered a Black & White photography specific award in the past … but when I noticed that Monovisions Black and White Photography Magazine was hosting their ‘First Edition’ (inaugural) Monovisions B&W International Photography Awards … I thought … what the hell … why not give it a bash!

I have just had some news today from Monovisions … and I’m a little pleased I did.

Appears I have three dispatches from the awards … winning a Second place and two Highly Commended awards in the Portrait category.

A B&W edition of my ‘The Skin I’m In – II” portrait (Thanks again due to my subject Carol … you’ve done it again!) was selected as Second Place Winner … only topped by the winning portrait work of Marco Gressler from Switzerland. Third place went to the work of Agnieszka Mac Uchman from Poland.

In fact such was the International flavour of the selected works that my two ‘Highly Commended’ images (“Mowisha from Jumbun” and “Aak Puul Ngantam Stockman – Dominic” …  below) sat amongst other acknowledged works from … Russia, Poland, Czech Republic, Georgia, Hungary, USA, the Netherlands, Croatia, France, China, Spain, Sweden, the UK, Slovakia, Italy, New Zealand, Germany, Lithuania, Austria, Bangladesh, Qatar, Brazil, Kenya, Canada, Romania, India, Turkey, Portugal, Argentina … and Macau ! To also grab a ‘second’ from amongst all that lot is pretty satisfying.

To the ‘film purest’ I must point out that each of my three selected images started out as full colour digital image files … and not film !!  Sorry bout that …

Images © Brian Cassey … click on each to take you to their relevant Monovisions Photography Awards pages.


2017 Monovisions B&W Photography Awards - Portrait - "The Skin I'm In - II" - by Brian Cassey2017 Monovisions B&W Photography Awards - Portrait - "Mowisha from Jumbun" - by Brian Cassey

2017 Monovisions B&W Photography Awards - Portrait - "Aak Puul Ngnatam Stockman - Dominic" - by Brian Cassey

The Final Frame … Nikon F2 and AFP400TX …

Well that brought back memories …

Back when shooting film and you have one frame left on your roll of thirty six … and something too good to miss presents itself.

Thanks to Renato Repetto‘s excellent AFP400TX project (#AFP400TX, @AFP400TX – see my earlier post) I recently got to revisit that long forgotten scenario. As explained earlier the project aims to get a manual everything Nikon F2 loaded with just one 36 frame roll of Tri-X film into the hands of selected photographers around Australia … and from the resulting images compile capital city exhibitions and a book.

An admirable project that I’m very pleased to be a part of.

I took my turn with the beautiful F2 a couple of weeks ago. Renato has just received my processed images back from the project sponsors Rewind Photo Lab in NSW … and has allowed me to use one image to show you guys what’s going on. (The rest are a secret until the project culmination.)

Prior to making this particular image I had already shot a variety of scenarios and carefully used 35 of the precious 36 frames on the roll. Then I met Geoff …

… and Geoff had a story to tell.

An accomplished musician, Geoff Tozer has been told he is dying. He has been diagnosed with bowel, bladder, bone and advanced spinal cancer. But … he says … “I’m too busy to die”. Geoff told me he’s a friend of Rolling Stones Bill Wyman and accomplished in Wyman’s musicality. He is set to work on the soundtrack of a new movie on the short life of Stones member Brian Jones … possibly alongside musician legends Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page and Mick Fleetwood.

So … with just that one frame left on my project roll of film I was feeling a bit of pressure when I lined up the image and pressed the shutter to make Geoff’s portrait.

It was with some relief that I received the scanned image (below) from Renato last eve !

The AFP400TX Nikon F2 camera is now winging it’s way down to Victoria for Melbourne photographers Michael Coyne, Jesse Marlow, Tracey Nearmy, Barat Ali Batoor and Andrew Chapman to make their contribution.

Image © Brian Cassey

AFP400TX Project - "Too Busy To Die" by Brian Cassey Cairns Australia

Nikon F2 … Roll of Tri-X … 36 Pics …

Thanks to legendary veteran combat photographer Tim Page (who dobbed me in) … I have this week been wielding on a spare shoulder a pristine circa 1971 manual everything Nikon F2 loaded with a roll of Tri-X film.

The idea … the brainchild of photographer Renato Repetto … is to get the Nikon into the hands of top (and not so top) photographers all around Australia who will each shoot one roll of B&W film … just 36 frames each.

The AFP400TX Project is about seeing life through the eyes of Australian Film Photographers. The Nikon F2 (eye level DE-1 Plain Prism, 1971-1976) no 7587117 with a 55mm 2.8 Micro Nikkor will be used for every exposure of the project, making the only variable the photographer. All rolls of film will be developed by the project sponsor Rewind Photo Lab in NSW to ensure consistency across the project.

My colleagues of note featured in the project include the afore mentioned Tim PageDavid Dare Parker, Michael Coyne, Stephen Dupont, Jesse Marlow, Sean Davey, Heather Faulkner, Roger Garwood  … and many maybe not so well known.

A diary accompanying the camera will document the creative thoughts of all the photographers in the project for later  incorporation into a photo book. The book will be launched with gallery exhibitions in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne featuring silver gelatin prints of the best photos of the project.

Now … I cut my teeth shooting ‘manual everything’ film SLR’s way, way back when … but can now confirm that ‘going back’ is somewhat of a sobering and frightening experience !!

Below is a pic I made (on a D4S) of Wik Munkan artist Lex Namponan from Aurukun, wielding the precious Nikon F2 used in the project. Lex was born in 1971 … the same year that the F2 was released. I used two precious frames from the Tri-X roll to make a portrait of Lex. Fingers crossed that Lex and I make the AFP400TX Project exhibitions and book …

Image © Brian Cassey

AFP400TX Project - Australia - Brian Cassey


Taking Up the B&W Challenge …

Never before have I seen collected photographers tackle anything with so much gusto and motivation.

The ‘5 Day Black and White Challenge’ based on Facebook seems to have galvanised Australia’s media photographers past and present. The quality of black and white images that have been gracing Facebook over the last few weeks have been sensational. The challenge has meant that many fine images taken over the decades are getting another well deserved airing instead of wallowing in the archives. Some real gems have appeared.

The list of Australian and Australian based photographers that have become involved is enormous. It’s a veritable ‘who’s who’ of Australian media photographers through the decades. Click on each of the photographers links below and it will take you to the great work in their particular B&W challenge.

So … in no particular order (and apologising for those I havn’t found) … David Dare Parker, Tim Page, Polani Mohan, Nick Moir, Dean LewisBrett Faulkner, Phil Hillyard, Tim Clayton, Mike Larder, Richard ‘Tommy’ Campion, Juno GemesCraig GreenhillRick Stevens, Graham Crouch, Megan LewisGlenn Campbell, Craig Golding, Tamara DeanGeorge Fetting, David May, Steve Holland, John French, Andy Zakeli, Mark ‘Crusty’ Baker, Steve Christo, Leigh Henningham, Martine Perret, Adam Hollingworth, Grant Turner, John Feder, Heather Faulkner, Verity ChambersJay Town, Gregg Porteous, Brett Costello, Nadia JanisJeff Darmanin, Chris Hyde, Jake Nowakowski, Richard Wainwright, Michael Amendolia, Hamish Blair, Jack Atley, David Maurice SmithRussell Shakespeare, James Brickwood, Craig Sillitoe, David Geraghty, Peter Bull, Dave Tacon, Matthew Goddard Jones, Sean Davey, Roger Garwood, Delly Carr, Cameron Spencer, Wolter Peeters, Natalie Grono, Sam HarrisVince Caligiuri, Ryan Pierse, Luke Marsden, Mark Dadswell, Asanka Brendon Ratnayake, Alan PrykeKelly BarnesDavid John Teas E, Conor Ashleigh, Adam Knott, Meredith O’Shea,  AJ Moran, Nathan Edwards, Lindsay MollerMorne Saffieboy de Klerk, James Elsby, David Mariuz, Quentin Jones, Alex Coppel, Craig Borrow, Peter Solness, Gary RamageAndrew Quilty … the list appears endless …

It doesn’t stop there either … around the World there are many thousands of photographers taking the opportunity to file some BW’s and ‘dob in’ another five colleagues. Photographers of the highest profile such as USA’s Ben Lowy have joined in.

My challenge was made by my Darwin mate Glenn Campbell. Over the five days I’ve nominated Dean Lewins, Craig Greenhill, Richard Wainwright, Sam Mooy and Tracey Nearmy.

The five B&W’s I selected for my challenge are below and if you click on the images it will take you to the relevant Facebook pages where you will see all the details, comments and ‘likes’. From top we have ‘Dire Straits’, ‘Polite Lawn Bowls’, ‘Race Fall’, ‘Fiji Coup’ and ‘Huli Woman’ and the images were made between the 80’s and 2000, all but number 4 on film (more than likely on Nikon FM2 or F4 bodies) whilst ‘Fuji Coup” was made on a Nikon D1 digital.

You can see many other photographers 5 Day B&W challenges by visiting #fivedayblackandwhitechallenge

Images © Brian Cassey

- ©pic by Brian Cassey


Ex Cairns Australia  pic by Brian Cassey Pic by Brian Cassey